It is so easy to sabotage yourself when you want to lose weight, I have done it too. Whether it is by treating yourself to chocolate because you have had a bad day or eating out for a family birthday and deciding that if you are off-plan then you may as well be properly off-plan. We have all done it, but who does it actually help in the long run?

A table with a birthday cakes

Why we self-sabotage

Everyone goes through periods of self-sabotage, the main reason for sabotaging your weight loss is underlying self-esteem issues. This is that you feel rubbish anyway so you think what harm would something bad do too!

Another big reason for self-sabotage is the influence of others. If we are not strong enough to remember our goals then when someone suggests chocolate cake, a night out or something similar we are not strong enough to remember our goals and why we are following this plan in the first place.

Whatever your reasons for self-sabotage these tips should help you to stop sabotaging your weight loss and stick to your goals.

Sabotaging your weight loss – what you do and how to avoid it

Depriving yourself

If you deprive yourself of enjoyable foods then you give in and overeat them then this is something I have struggled with too.

The best way to overcome this is to now have any forbidden foods and stop labelling foods as good or bad but instead enjoy everything but in varying portion sizes and frequencies.

If you eat the “bad foods” you enjoy in small quantities you will stop yourself from craving these foods and then binging on them when the craving gets too much.

Eating what the family eats

Do you try to eat different foods from your family and then give in and eat the high-fat foods that they eat?

Instead of having your foods and their foods have family foods. There is no reason that they can not eat low-calorie foods too as they are not really “diet foods” they are simply healthy meals!

If going back for seconds is an issue then put leftovers straight in a tub into the fridge or freezer for another day. This will stop you from overeating!

You skip breakfast

If you often skip breakfast thinking it will help you with your weight loss this is sadly rarely the case.

The reality is that if you do not eat breakfast then the hunger builds in you and later on you will overeat or binge instead.

Rather than skipping breakfast why not find a healthy option you can enjoy, there are lots of ideas in my breakfast guide. Even if you just grab a banana or an apple it is better than skipping eating altogether.

“I’m off-plan so I may as well be properly off plan!”

Do you go to parties, nights out, or events and think that as you are not eating “on-plan” you may as well thoroughly enjoy it? I know the feeling this is one of the things I tend to do but the reality is that it is sabotaging your weight loss!

Whilst you do not have to eat on plan when you go out, you also don’t have to be completely off-plan and unhealthy either. Making a few changes can make a difference.

Share a starter with your partner or order a salad as a starter if you want to join in with starters. Instead of dessert have a coffee. Even a latte or cappuccino is unlikely to have as many calories as the cake you fancied!

When choosing your meals opt for things that have been cooked in lower-fat methods such as grilling, boiling/steaming or stir-frying rather than deep fat frying. Simply swapping from chips to boiled potatoes could make a difference.

Repeatedly weighing yourself

This is definitely something I have struggled with in the past. If you weigh yourself daily or even several times a day you are only setting yourself up for sabotage.

Did you know your weight fluctuates by several pounds some days just because of the way our body works and processes foods and waste? Weighing once a week at the most is more than adequate but why not instead look at your measurements and record those?

Keeping track of your goals is really important

If you need a little help with keeping on track of your weight loss then this freebie could make all the difference. Simply sign up to receive it by email and use it to help you stay motivated.



Do you eat whilst working, reading, watching TV, scrolling Facebook etc? If you eat whilst doing other things it reduces your satisfaction of eating and you do not get the same joy from eating and the same fulfilment.

Whilst this sounds like you don’t need this you do. If you find you are always doing something whilst eating you are inevitably going to be hungry later on because your mind didn’t really eat!

Eat mindfully and focus only on your food at mealtimes, perhaps having a conversation with your partner or family but nothing else is the key to not overeating later in the day and as such sabotaging your weight loss.

Gaining weight then eating anyway

If you don’t lose weight when you get on the scales (sometimes too frequently – see the point earlier!) and even gain weight, do you decide you should eat what you want anyway?

You are not alone in this, I have done this so many times but it is one of the biggest forms of self-sabotage. As your weight fluctuates it may be that this week it just happened to be the wrong point that you checked your weight.

Weight loss is about changing your weight in general and changing your mindset. This is not a one week journey so one week that didn’t seem to go as expected shouldn’t put you off. Remember slow and steady is the mantra you need to follow. An average loss of a pound or two a week is just fine.

If the general direction of your weight is going down then it really doesn’t matter what this weeks weight is. If you are really disappointed why not consider adding in exercise for a long term goal?

What do you do that sabotages your weight loss? Do you find yourself sabotaging your weight loss in one way or another most weeks?

I believe you can do it, do you believe in yourself?

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